Posted on Tue, Jun. 17, 2003

New York Times

Linus Torvalds, the Finnish programmer and leader of the shared-software movement, is leaving his job with Transmeta, a struggling Santa Clara chip maker, and taking a position with a consortium developing the Linux operating system for corporations.

Torvalds has been instrumental in the development of the freely shared Linux operating system now viewed as the chief competitor to Microsoft in a number of markets. He said Monday that he wanted to concentrate all of his efforts on a new version of the program that is expected be released this summer.

« There was no huge particular reason to leave Transmeta, » Torvalds wrote in an e-mail. « But I’ve felt somewhat guilty lately about the fact that I’ve spent a lot more time on Linux than I have on my real work at Transmeta. »

The Linux operating system has experienced particularly strong growth in corporate markets. Gartner, a market research concern, recently reported that Linux increased its market share in the server market 62 percent while the overall market declined 8 percent in 2002.

Torvalds will become the first fellow of the Open Source Development Lab, a non-profit consortium based in Beaverton, Ore.

The organization was created three years ago to encourage the development of Linux software for corporate data centers and telecommunications companies. Software that is used in these environments has more stringent reliability requirements.

The organization was created with an investment of $20 million from IBM, Hewlett-Packard, Intel, Computer Associates, NEC and Fujitsu.


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